In this issue: Director's Letter: State Testing / Calling All Kindys! / Spring Gala Dinner & Auction / Favorite Teacher Contest / Family Reading Night / Celebrate Dr. Suess / 2nd Annual Spring Cleaning / MySchoolBucks.com / 8th Grade Night @ RPHS
DEAR FALCON FAMILIES AND FRIENDS
With all the current news about state testing, I want to continue making sure you all feel informed
As you know, in 2010, Oregon adopted new academic standards in English and math for K-12 called the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Oregon, along with 43 other states, chose to adopt the standards as a move towards ensuring that all students graduate from high school with the academic knowledge and skills necessary for success in college, career, and life.
The new standards set out the minimum of what your child should know and be able to do at each grade level and they are aligned to college- and career-expectations to ensure your child will be ready to take their next step after graduating from high school. Although Oregon has had academic standards for years, the previous standards did not adequately prepare our students. Statewide, approximately 66 percent of high school graduates who go on to attend community college need to take remedial, or pre-college level, courses in English and/or math. This is a travesty. Our children deserve to graduate from high school with the skills they need to be successful in college or the workforce – without the need for remediation.
Since the new standards require changes in the state mandated tests which are given to students in grades 3-8 and 11, Oregon is transitioning to a new statewide assessment this spring called Smarter Balanced. The new tests will be more interactive, instead of relying on multiple choice questions like past tests have done, and are designed to provide better information about what your child knows and can do. Unfortunately, they will also take more time for students to complete and it will be months before we have the results. Initial estimates of time requirements for all tasks, including practice sessions, is about 9 hours for 3rd to 5th and 9.5 hours for 5th to 8th. The district projects that results for the tests will be available sometime in October.
Because the CCSS set the bar higher than Oregon’s previous standards, the assumption is that it will take students a few years to master them, and districts will initially see a drop in the number of students reaching this higher proficiency level. However, it is really important to remember drops in test scores are not because your children woke up one day and were not as smart as the day before. It is because the benchmark has moved.
It is important to us here at Cascade Heights that the standards do not tell our teachers how to teach. Our curriculum and educational philosophy will not change and it is worth noting that they are well aligned to the requirements of Common Core. As the primary educators of your children, please take the time to review information on Common Core and Smarter Balanced and ask questions. We are your partners in the work of preparing your child for success this year and in the future. Helping them navigate the new tests is only part of that endeavor.
CALLING ALL KINDYS!
Applications due Monday, March 2, 2015 at 4:00 PM
All children, including siblings of current students, who wish to attend Kindergarten at CHCPS for the 2015-16 school year must submit an application.
Applications may be downloaded from our website or picked up at the office. Note: Applications are not accepted by fax or email.
SAVE THE DATE ~ SPRING GALA DINNER, LIVE & SILENT AUCTION
Saturday, May 9, 2015 at 6:30 in the evening
This event, spearheaded by the PTA, will be our main fundraiser of the year. Tickets will be on sale soon: $35 per person or $60 per couple (over 21 only).
We hope every family will be able to join us in this community fundraising activity. You can help by soliciting donations of items to be auctioned (all items large and small are welcome). We hope you will also attend and invite family, friends and others as guests.
The handbook and other downloadable documents, including sample solicitation letters, can be found at http://cascadeheights.org/get-involved/fundraising-dinner-and-auction.html. Please read over the Auction Handbook to see how we can all join together to support our students at CHPCS!
Beautiful full color posters are available in the office. Put them up at work, local community boards, businesses you patronize, or anywhere else you can think of to help spread the word.
If you have questions, please email PTA or attend the upcoming PTA meeting on Wednesday, March 11 at 6:30 pm.
Thank you for making our auction a success!
FAVORITE TEACHER CONTEST
Entries are due by Sunday, March 1st
The entry form for students is here: http://cascadeheights.org/files/downloads/news/2015-BN-contest-entry.pdf.
If you did not already submit your entry to Mrs. Denman, you may deliver it to the store by the deadline.
DR. SEUSS’ BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION & FAMILY READING NIGHT
Thursday, March 5, 6:30 – 8:00
Online sign ups for Family Reading Night are live! To sign up, visit: www.SignUpGenius.com/go/60B0D4FA5AF23A20-2015
New this year! Teacher vs student Battle of the Books battle at 7:30
3rd – 8th grade students may be on the student team. Sign up is by the gym.
MORE WAYS TO CELEBRATE READING
Other organizations also honor Dr. Seuss’ Birthday with special events
- Tips to inspire young readers
- Activity Ideas
- Printable Certificates
• Scholastic has lots of tips to help parents inspire the love of reading in their children:
So get reading!
JOIN OUR 2ND ANNUAL SPRING CLEANING!
Save the date: Saturday, April 18, 9 to 4
If you are like many families at Cascade, you love our school, but don't have money or time during the week to show that love. Please join us in giving back as we spruce up the inside and outside of our school. Stay a few hours, or pack a picnic lunch and stay the day! We have 44,000 square feet of building and a BIG yard to clean, so there will be plenty of work to go around.
GOT LUNCH MONEY?
Sign up for online access for lunch money accounts
Parents who are interested in having balance updates for lunch money should sign up for the Myschoolbucks.com service. Online access allows families to have complete control and overview of student accounts.
With MySchoolBucks, you can add money to your child's account, view account balances and recent purchases, and set up notifications for upcoming payments from the convenience of your home, office, or on-the-go with the mobile app. Myschoolbucks is the preferred method for adding currency and balance tracking.
If you need your child’s account number, it is the same as the student ID and can be found on your child's progress report.
8th GRADE NIGHT AT REX PUTNAM HIGH SCHOOL
Monday, March 2, 2015, 6:30 – 8:00 pm
Cascade Heights 8th grade students and families are invited to attend Rex Putnam’s annual 8th Grade Night.
Come anytime between 6:30 and 8:00 pm to learn more about the classes, special programs, athletics, and activities available at RPHS. Counselors will be stationed in the computer labs to answer questions and to help families make forecasting choices.